Radius Health CEO: Skin Patch Data is the Value Driver

5/13/13Follow @benthefidler

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a lot of value if [we] tried to do this in one fell swoop and the one fell swoop would’ve been done in the IPO,” he says. “Once you’re a public entity, you could have spectacular results, and then something untowardly happens in Spain, and all of a sudden you’re kind of in the same mix [as everyone else].”

Truth be told, Wyzga would have no problem keeping Radius private. Private companies are familiar with their shareholders and have more decision-making flexibility regarding potential licensing deals or capital raising moves, he says. Wzyga, for example, recalls living through the messy Genzyme-Carl Icahn proxy battle, which ultimately led to the billionaire activist investor winning a few seats on the biotech giant’s board roughly a year before it was sold to Sanofi.

“Maybe I’ve been a little marked by that,” he says. “I think it’s always functionally easier to be a private company than a public company.”

Wyzga says Radius has been approached by strategic partners hoping to “get in front of the patch data.” But the company hasn’t budged or reached out on its own, and won’t anytime soon.

“I’m not an optimistic guy—as a matter of fact, most stuff doesn’t work,” he says. “[But] we are dangerously close on this patch data. We’ve made it so far.”

The $43 million Radius raised in April will get the company through the data release with another six or seven months to spare, which Wyzga believes will be ample time for Radius to make its move, assuming the data are good.

Wyzga concedes that, should the drug make it through clinical trials and win approval from regulators, Radius likely can’t—and doesn’t necessarily want to—build the necessary infrastructure to sell it on its own. That would appear to set Radius up for a buyout or partnership when the timing is right.

“I think it’d be a blast to build it out in the U.S., but I’m not sure we’ll get that far. And value maximization, I think, is the key to our current shareholders,” he says.

Ben Fidler is Xconomy's Deputy Biotechnology Editor. You can e-mail him at bfidler@xconomy.com Follow @benthefidler

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